When Women Wake, Mountains Move

To all women groups in" SMALL IS GREAT": You are invited to a one day workshop to be held on 17th August 2013. Venue: Kasangati Education School, 10 miles on Kampala- Gayaza road, opposite Ssaza headquaters.
Time : 9:00 am-5:00pm

Woman made a powerful Dream Tree. Everybody have dreams. Its all starting with a dream. Its our dreams that are keeping us alive and mowing us towards our fullfillment.
The future belongs to those who believe in the beauty of their dreams. Eleanor Roosevelt
Esther Kwagalakwe from Mabira Sese Widows and Orphanage Empowerment at Mabira Forest are sharing her experiences in business.
Anena Beatrice of Acholi Womens Group are sharing her experiences in business.

Facilitator is Esther Nalule.
Mr. Philip Mwanja of Living Business Education was the main facilitator. Topics covered in the 2 days workshop included book keeping, risk management, planning and marketing. These were summarized in a book on Establishing and Managing Small Business Enterprises.
District woman member of Parliament Hon. Sseninde Rosemary, donated 2 sewing machines to the school.
2 Workshop for Small is Great 2013

In August Small is Great held a workshop on the topic: Management and sustainability of small income generating projects.

The purpose of the workshop
was to equip women with skills of managing and sustaining their businesses to earn them a living. The workshop was attended by 105 participants from different women groups in Small is Great with emphasis on the following: planning and marketing .

It all started with personal dreams that is women shared with others were they want to see themselves years from now. During the workshop women in different fields of business including crafts work, poultry, and animal rearing shared their experiences with participants on the following:

  • What businesses they are in (goals and objectives)
  • How they started their business
  • How they run their businesses
  • The marketing techniques they employ
  • What has made them stay in business amidst stiff competition
  • Their future plans

In a guided discussion and group work, groups of 10 participants were formed and each group came up with its views on:

  • What they want to do
  • What they are capable of doing
  • The most workable ways of achieving their business goals
  • What they can expect in future

Presentation for each group was made by the group leader.

Positive effects
Women learnt:

  • How to achieve personal dreams
  • Different business opportunities that can be exploited from their environment
  • How to become a successful sales person
  • How to package their products and make them appear different from those of competitors

Participants came up with the following as some of the challenges they experience in their efforts to manage sustainable businesses:

  • Limited access to land denies them the chance to carry on farming as a business instead they end up carrying it out for subsistence use
  • Having no right to property or wealth in a home. Men (husbands ) interfere with their businesses and threaten them with violence in case they refuse to disclose or surrender profits to them
  • Limited labour force in Agriculture , this is because they base on child labour for their businesses and during school time children go to school. In return their businesses remain at stand still, in this case some resort to denying their children access to education in order for them to provide labour
  • Inadquate access to financial services to enable them raise working capital to finance their businesses. Banks require collateral security that women donot have so they end up denying them loans.
  • Ignorance on the available market opportunities
  • Illiteracy, thus they cannot access opportunities in the media

Way forward
Planning, setting up and marketing of a business is not enough for the women to achieve success and sustain their businesses. The businesses set up must be managed properly in order to attain the desired business objectives which is possible through proper financial control, risk management and monitoring. These will be covered in the next workshop.

Follow up
This will be made through sample field visits to individual businesses to find out whether they will have implemented what they learnt.

Food and drinks were provided.

Womens groups attending
Friends of life - Acholi womens
Ssese widows and Orphanage Association
Kitetika miracle group and destiny group Mpererwe
Blessed group Nabunya -Lubaga
Kuzza youth troupe
Masuulita women Development initiative
Masooli womens group
Wampeewo womens group
Kabubbu womens group
Nangabo womens group
Katadde womens group
Bulamu womens group
Faith harvest Luwero

Some of the womens dreams as mentioned in the workshop
1. To have their children educated so as to have good jobs and they look after them (their parents) at old age
2. To have their businesses expanding to a large scale so as to enjoy a lot of profits and improve their standards of living
Businesses mentioned include; poultry , piggery , diary farming, craftswork, retailshops, and crop farming
3.To have personal businesses without the influence of their husband
4. To have personal land and put up houses to stop renting
5. To have self contained houses with all the facilities in place

Compiled by Nalule Esther. In charge of the workshop

Comments on Facebook
Zeinab Sarita: Morning small is great hope all is well, wow, we had a wonderfull time in Kasangati. It was wonderfull, we met with different women from around the outskirt of Kampala, we exchanged contacts we made friends, wow it was great, women are talented in different things, we learned new ideas. I tell u it was wonderfull, this has to be done again. great work Nalule.

The workshop was sponsored by Ellen Krageberg and Bitten Schei, Norway, both selling paperbeads to Norwegian women made from the Acholi women in Banda.

Video below: Woman creating a Dream Tree

19TH October 2013 Small is Great held a workshop to complete the training on management and sustainability of small income generating projects and to lay strategies for Girls Have a Dream School.

The workshop was attended by 115 women and 6 men from 16 women groups namely; Masooli,Wampeewo, Katadde, Bulamu, Kabubbu, Masuulita , Acholi women, Nangabo, Ssese Widows and Orphanage, Kitetikka Miracle group, Kuza Youth troupe, Namawojolo Sacco, Destiny group Mpererwe, Nabunya Zone. New groups include Gayaza womens group and Kiteezi women group.

Mr. Philip Mwanja of Living Business Education was the main facilitator. Topics covered in the 2 days workshop included book keeping, risk management, planning and marketing. These were summarized in a book on Establishing and Managing Small Business Enterprises.The workshop was attended by the District woman member of Parliament Hon. Sseninde Rosemary, who donated 2 sewing machines to the school. Different women groups exhibited products they make as a way of marketing them. Products included: soap making, crafts work, mushroom growing fruits and vegetables.

Other important issues discussed are strategies for developing Girls Have a Dream School. The following were the outcomes:

1. A board of governors was elected comprising of 2 representatives from each of the women groups.

2. Board members to identify a suitable location that is easily accessible by all the groups.

3. Women to contribute towards the feeding of the girls and staff while at school

4. Women groups to contribute towards rent for the first 3 months.

5. Learners to contribute a small admission fee to cater for a few school expenses.

Sustainability of the school
Women agreed to market the school products/services to enable the school raise funds.

Challenges identified
A concern was noted for the girls from far distant groups on how they will be in position to access training from the school given the long distance, so they noted a need for boarding facilities.

Way forward
Meetings to be held after every two weeks with the board of governors to discuss the progress of the school and to lay strategies for raising funds.

Time frame: Women suggested January next year as the month for opening the school.

Compiled by: Nalule Esther. Project coordinator Small is Great/Girls Have a Dream School.

The second workshop is supported by Lilian Nabulime, artist from Uganda, and Telemark county council, Team International.